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Old 02-09-2007, 10:30 AM
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Cleaning aluminum manifolds

What can I do to get rid of the dull finish that the aluminum manifolds end up with? I've tried cleaners with no luck, have used acids and caustics, ended up with an ugly greyish finish, please suggest something that works, please don't reffer to a commercial brand name wich is very unlikely I could find here. Chrome and brass cleaners are available would they work?
thanks.
Augusto.

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Old 02-09-2007, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Augusto
What can I do to get rid of the dull finish that the aluminum manifolds end up with? I've tried cleaners with no luck, have used acids and caustics, ended up with an ugly greyish finish, please suggest something that works, please don't reffer to a commercial brand name wich is very unlikely I could find here. Chrome and brass cleaners are available would they work?
thanks.
Augusto.
Augusto,
The only good way that will clean the rough and oxidized aluminum intake manifolds is to have them glass bead blasted. Chemicals usually compound the problem. This bead blasting will, unfortunately, entail removal from the engine. While you possibly don't have a company like HTP or Jet-Hot Coatings, in Ecuador, this is about the only way to keep them sparkling after they have been blasted.

Dave
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Old 02-09-2007, 12:30 PM
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One can always break out the dremel and polish one of those..bit of work but they do look very nice when done..Blasting with walnut shells cleans them well too..

Just trying to think of things we can do out in the woods so to speak..

Sam
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Old 02-09-2007, 01:24 PM
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I take all mine to work and have them shot blasted. They come out looking better than new. So I second glass bead blasting. Years ago I tried almost boiling point high pressure hot water on a intake, when I was finished you couldn`t tell the intake had been touched. So I learned, unless it`s blasted, nothing really helps.
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Old 02-09-2007, 02:08 PM
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Cleaning aluminum manifolds

I polished mine a few years ago,its a lot of work,I probably spent close to 100 hours on it in total.I sanded and sanded and sanded some more,then I polished it.Any kind of aluminum polish will work,wont matter what kind.A little polish on some Green ScotchBrite or a peice of extra fine emery paper works good for a final shine.
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Old 02-09-2007, 02:15 PM
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Have you tried mag wheel cleaner?......short of taking it off and media blsting, thats what I find works best.
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Old 02-09-2007, 02:38 PM
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mag wheel cleaner? yea! it migth work after all mag wheels are not mag but alum ain't it?
I'll go shopping latter, hope I can find one for the old bare mags, the newer stuff is clear coated or painted, the products for them will not work.
The dremel tool also could be the best option but, man I'll see if I can find someone willing to do it for beer, I bet it take more time then porting a head, not my kind of fun for a weekend.
Thanks.
Augusto.
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Old 02-09-2007, 04:12 PM
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Cleaning aluminum manifolds

Bead blasting is the real way to go. Either which way you decide to go spend a little time taking it off maybe use some 100grit sandpaper or have it bead blasted or whatever but whatever you do, have it clear coated, either satin or glossy, to keep it easy to maintain.
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Old 02-09-2007, 04:32 PM
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cleaner

I have also used mag wheel cleaner some years ago, and it worked very well, but that was years ago, and I have not found a product that has worked as well since, but maybe there is something out there..check out my picture of my boat motor, I used muriatic acid to get the dull Grey look because that is what I wanted on this project to match the rest of the aluminum motor parts, and to look utilitarian, and easy to maintain.
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Old 02-09-2007, 06:08 PM
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I bought one of those powder coating kits from harbor freight and powder coated mine. Thing is you have to glass bead it to clean it first. But it is eassy to keep clean now.
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Old 02-09-2007, 09:50 PM
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This might be a good read before you start.
Polishers - what am I doing wrong?
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